Thursday, July 31, 2008

mingus ' "epitaph" @

another one courtesy of my buddy andrew. ain't streaming radio grand?

kavin.'s acoustic church cd review @

a review i penned of kavin allenson's cd westward is online now at so there.

PFFFF(F)T! pics @

my sweetie just pubbed some of her pics from PFFFF(F)T!'s 7.27.2008 fairmount stand at yeah!

stream tom waits on!

from my pal andrew in philly:


NPR has a full (as in 2+ hours) concert from tom waits' recently completed "glitter & doom tour."

it's pretty special.

you can also get it as a downloadable podcast via the Itunes store (it's free) if you type in "npr podcasts" and search through the archives. lots of other good shows there too (ted leo, sleater-kinney, yo la tengo, etc.)


the green manalishi

ed kuepper

ex-saints gtrist and laughing clowns frontman, german-born aussie ed kuepper's made a pile of good recs over the yrs. here are three vids from his one shot on a major label, 1988's everybody's got to, which sank like a stone, sending him scurrying back to indieland, where he continues to create to this very day.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

good news, of a sort

it's been a few yrs now since i watched supersize me and i-swear-to-ceiling-cat stopped eating fast food. now, stuff like this doesn't even look like food to me. still like fredburgers and kincaid's real fine, howevah.

tokyo ska paradise orchestra

terry reid

was surprised to hear terry reid's "rich kid blues" on the fairmount jukebox the other night. he's the dude that jimmy page originally wanted to front led zep (reid declined but pulled page's coat to robert plant and john bonham) and was also the top candidate for the lead singer slot in deep purple mk II. here's a clip of his performance at the isle of wight, 1970, with david lindley on lap steel (the band that producer mickie most wouldn't let him record with). now he lives in l.a. and fronts a monday night cover band at a spot called the joint.


PFFFF(F)T! -- that's "classic" PFFFFT! plus ghostcar founder daniel huffman, who's been touring with the polyphonic spree -- played the fairmount for the first time sunday night. bill pohl citizen patrol opened and wowed the crowd with technically immaculate prog wonderment. my pal ron geida sat in for jeff beck's "diamond dust" and admitted later "i had to practice all week to play one song." (keith wingate, in the audience, kept asking, "where's the melody?") non-snazz aspect: some local losers absconded with chapman stickman rick reid's pedalboard while he was loading out. gotta watch your shit.

daniel brought a heavily mod-ed gibson melody maker, a chromachord, and a pedalboard of michio kurihara-esque dimensions that allowed him to add an array of textures to the sonic canvas. at times it was like standing next to a cathedral organ. he's not just hacking; he's got a great ear and makes astute choices. he seemed to bring out the fire in tony chapman, too. can't wait to hear the recording of this, and hoping daniel makes it out to the chat room when we play there august 24th. we ran off a lot of the crowd at the fairmount that night, but owner sally still dug us (said "the musicians liked it") and levi (the andre/ben of the fairmount) booked dates for us in september and october.

painting the living room yesterday, i was listening to the july 16th edition of kosmik radiation radio (still streamable until the 30th), which had a bunch of psych-funk and other '70s-evocative stuff that kinda reminded me of the way PFFFFT! plays. as i told clay the other night, "our soul has been psychedelicized." or as i told matt yesterday, "we're the anti-sleeplab."

ray came back a day early from mike brown's wedding in west virginia, so we had stoogeprac for the first time with richard hurley (pee pee, guy 2000, blood of the sun) stepping in to replace sir steffin on gtr. richard found out at the last minute, after spending the whole day at nrh2o, but he showed up well prepared, only needing to go over a coupla toons again. just need to make sure we rehearse a coupla times so he can feel comfortable before the stoogeband breaks the seal on the fairmount august 14th. we're all excited about having him on board.

this morning i'm listening to some comets on fire i got from teague -- blue cathedral and field recordings from the sun. these bay area boyzzz have some of what their forefathers from the '60s dead/airplane/quicksilver era had, laced with a heavy dose of japanoise a la high rise/mainliner/boris. on gtr, ethan miller is operating in the same territory as michio kurihara is. me like much.

Monday, July 28, 2008

mahler on wrr

i was bummed because i'm gonna be out of town on the night (august 22nd) when the fort worth symphony performs mahler's 6th ("tragic") symphony, but kurt rongey told me that the performance will stream live over hooray!

ramones '75 @ arturo vega's loft

hey seen thisun?

Sunday, July 27, 2008

last night

we went to see the dark knight (everything you've read is true) and then grilled a whole striped bass stuffed with cilantro and lemon and rubbed with sea salt and ground black pepper. enjoyed with ears of corn, cut-up melon, and carrot-and-celery salad with cranberries. blueberry cobbler for dessert. yeah!

kincaid's stays!

hooray! (thanks to herb levy for the coat-pull.)

Saturday, July 26, 2008

sing, sing, sing

i have insomnia, so you get to hear the benny goodman orchestra, with harry james on trumpet and gene krupa on drums, play "sing sing sing," which my middle dtr once very astutely pointed out has the dynamics of a rock 'n' roll number.

more PFFFFT! toonage online

the complete PFFFFT! performance from the chat room, 7.20.2007 -- all three sets -- is online now at katboy's pfffft! archive. if you like what you hear, we'll be at the fairmount tomorrow night, with bill pohl citizen patrol opening. no cover; show starts at 10pm.

gutterth compilation review @

a review i penned of gutterth productions' new compilation cd is online now at

pat metheny - "as it is"

this effect has been kinda overdone, and i was hesitant to post it because it came from the same wfmu blog as the carlin clip, but i almost pissed my pants laughing the first time i saw it, and i still think it's funny the day after, so...

another gtr dream

in this one, i was playing "sleep walk" with keith wingate. (i played riddim. duh.) sir steffin talked about wanting to try the toon with pablo using his lap steel. the other night at sardines, keith very kindly and graciously offered to let me sit in with johnny case, but i declined -- i know my limitations, which include not being able to play jazz changes. it'll be interesting playing a PFFFFT! show at the end of a week when i seem to have been fairly preoccupied with playing gtr, after playing one where i hadn't actually thought about playing in several weeks (since my berfday, in fact), and my thoughts were mainly concerned with family stuff, finishing the haltom city book, the who, and a little boy from congo in africa who went to my sweetie's school and passed away the weekend before the gig.

Friday, July 25, 2008

george carlin: too hip for the room

gutterth compilation

gutterth productions hath released a double compilation cd of local worthies (including the great tyrant) that's downloadable free via their website. yeah!

PFFFFT! got blotched the fw weekly.

more shit i dreamed

last night i was taking a gtr lesson from a very insulting, abusive italian named "joe smith." however, i had my old sg back. ?!?!?

mommy, what was journalism?

the last refuge of douchebags? in my days of writing on spec, i crabbed as much as anyone about editorialismo i didn't agree with, but jayzus.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

bill frisell @ mcdavid studio, 8.1.2008

bassist extraordinaire paul unger reports (and the artist's website confirms) that bill frisell be's at the bass hall (actually mcdavid studio across the street) with a quartet on august 1st. non-snazz aspect: tixxx be $35 apiece. ouch.

an interactive guide to bush administration lawbreaking

joe rogan

thanks to dre for the coat-pull:

more here.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

ha-ha of the day

from some guy from slayer, speaking to rolling stone:

Seeing a 50-year-old man headbanging on stage would make me cringe. If I was watching that, I’d think, ‘Dude, you’re a little too old for that, aren’t you?

ugly things

speaking of print music rags, there's a new ugly things coming out in august. kinda '60s brit r&b/u.s. garage and '70s punk focused, but if you're into those genres at all, there's plenty of aspergerish obsessive-compulsive scholarship here to make it a worthwhile read.

fred's update

three things from fonky fred's:

1) currie street in front of the cafe is open again. hooray!

2) james hinkle's cd release party for some day is being held there this saturday, august 26th.

3) outlaw chef terry chandler is teaching a cooking class at central market on saturday, august 23rd, which his wife jennifer describeth thus:

Bring in the Chili Harvest with the Outlaw Chef, Terry Chandler, and his brand of rustic cooking!

He’ll start things out with Hatch Chili Nachos & Green Chili Sirloin Rolls. Then he’ll demo Green Chili Stew with Lamb and Navajo Fry Bread. For dessert, “Yelpin Pup” his twist on classic chuckwagon rice pudding.

Sat Aug 23 - 6:30 thru 9pm
Contact Central Market Cooking School at (817) 377-9005

boris and torche @

dude saw them in massachusetts. a nice reminder of the best show i'll see this yr.

ADDENDUM: am i the only one who thinks the singer guy from torche looks like william murderface?

the "death of the music industry"

mr. methane


he's a "flatulist."


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

john lennon

it's hard to imagine any of today's "rockstars" sitting down and having a convo with a 14-yr-old kid, the way he did with jerry levitan back in '69. of course, 14-yr-old kids have changed a lot since then, but i don't think we'll see another one like him, either. i wasn't a beatle fan, but i miss him. and fucking hate guns.

happy berfday george

in honor of george clinton's 67th b-day, here's naked city (john zorn, wayne horvitz, fred frith, yamatsuka eye, joey barron, and bill frisell) playing funkadelic's "super stupid."

bar of soap

here's where we're playing in september. i haven't been there in yrs, but i saw dead sexy and the immortal lee county killers there.

david choe

calvin sent links to dirty hands, a documentary about outlaw artist david choe by his nephew harry kim (click on the trailer tab), and seasons one and two of thumbs up!, a doco that follows david and harry -- "two of the baddest gooks in k-town" -- as they hitchhike cross-country.

peter laughner retrospective: 2009?

from smog veil records:

...we’ve been working nearly 3 years now on our Peter Laughner retrospective. We started with an initial set of 20 CDr masters containing about 300 recordings, many of which have never been heard. We’ve since added to that with the discovery of some newly unearthed recordings, that haven’t been heard since the day they were recorded. We’re still gathering material, but think we’ve compiled everything except for 1 very special recording. An initial run through of the material produced a master of about 120 recordings, and we’re working on a second edit as I write. Add to that some amazing liner notes and photos, and this will be an amazing definitive release, I promise. But, we want it to be perfect and won’t release it until we think it’s there. So, I was hoping to release it this year. We may, but 2009 looks more realistic. More details to follow as we make more progress. Don’t know who Peter Laugher is? See here.

flying fish

lately our fave place to chow is the flying fish, within hoofing distance of la casa at 2913 montgomery, where they have good catfish (and all you can eat on wednesdays), lotsa broiled specialties, the fish tacos come with coleslaw like a memphis bbq sammie, and they even have key lime pie for dessert. not zeke's (no cod), but still good.

save the date

friday, 8.8.2008, it's the great tyrant and yells at eels at lola's.

PFFFFT! 7.20.2008 audio online

the first set of our 7.20.2008 chat room stand is online now at katboy's PFFFFT! archive. dig it!

grrr arrrggghhh

dicking around with the h&k this morning. the good news: the tubes all appear to be intact. the weirdness: when i take the back off the cabinet and have the works outside with the footswitch connected, the hum in the overdrive channel doesn't occur, even when i play at volume. but when i put it back together, the hum returns, and sometimes persists even after i disconnect the footswitch. wtf?!?!?

Monday, July 21, 2008

family, PFFFFT!, overheard conversations

talked to my dad the other day. he was happy to hear that i'm going to be visiting him soon although he couldn't keep straight whether it was going to be in five days or five months (it's five weeks -- assuming i can get the days off from work). there were times when i couldn't understand what he was saying, but at least he sounded relatively happy.

my ma is suffering pretty severe short-term memory loss, to the point where she can't remember the last house she lived in (she lived there five years), or any of the strategies they've tried to teach her to help her avoid falling (her balance is pretty much shot). haven't talked to her in awhile; need to.

my middle dtr showed me her tcu degree plan (english major with women's studies emphasis, minoring in japanese). it sounds like she and her sisters are all doing well -- figuring things out, in better places than they were just recently. nice. would like to see 'em all soon if it can be worked out.

PFFFFT! played at the chat room last night. matt was back from tennessee and fresh from practicing with his police cover band. i came from work and had just cut my left middle finger with a boxcutter (which i used to play slide later). forgot my gtr strap but luckily for me, hembree carries extras of _everything_ (didn't have enough double a's for tony's synth, however). i discovered that i don't like the sound of the li'l roland amp with the tele very much. gotta fix the h&k. the first set (:59) was kinda tentative, the second (1:10) more intense (i got _high_ from playing that; clay said he did too); the third (just a slight return before last call) was totally insane. we seem to be getting better at listening to each other, and at the same time, we seem to be becoming more rawk. the critical mass bike ppl were there when we started, but even after they left, there was a decent house, including ppl i'd seen before who said they came specifically to hear us play. nice. non-snazz aspect: there was a shooting across magnolia while we were playing our first set. luckily, the victim survived. scary. my sweetie took pics and posted some of 'em on her photo blog. we're playing the fairmount next sunday.

when i was walking home from work the other night, i passed these two guys running and overheard their convo. one of them was telling his buddy, "so when [girlfriend's name] is gone, i won't need the extra money i've been using on dating -- not that i ever have a lot of extra money -- so i can get my iphone."

today when i was eating lunch, i overheard a guy talking on his cellphone, telling his buddy, "if you keep dating [girlfriend's name], one of the cool things about her is that her mother works for american airlines, so you can use her frequent flyer miles."

who said romance was dead? douchebags.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

a possible reason for vh1 (and pearl jam) to exist

eddie doesn't make that annoying "r-r-r-r" sound in inappropriate places anymore, but mccready needs to get the timing of his jumps down. maybe he could take lessons from daniel gomez.

more here.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

lola's sunday picnic

speaking of which...just got this from spune:

7 Bands / Big Cookout!
Cook-Out Starts at 1 PM
All Ages. $5 Over 21 / $10 Under 21

Josh Weathers Band 8:30 PM - 9:30 PM
Darth Vato 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Odis 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM
The White Walls 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
April Geesbreght 2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
Jordan Critz 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
after the show - Jazz w/ Dave Karnes 10:30 PM - 2 AM (No Cover like normal)

Stoogeaphilia 8:30 PM - 9:30 PM
The Me-Thinks 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
TitanMoon 5:30 PM - 6:30 PM
Jefferson Colby 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
The Cut Off 2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
Hurt Street 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
after the show - Jazz w/ Dave Karnes 10:30 PM - 2 AM (No Cover like normal)

7 Bands. Big Cookout! Willie has his picnic so why not let Lola's get some?! This festive all-day event will be held on Sunday, July 27th and August 31st and will showcase an eclectic line up of local/regional bands. We will be cooking out all day! Sunday Night Jazz with Dave Karnes will finish the event off doing what they do best. There will be Mimosas and Bloody Mary specials too! If you are over 21, the entire day is only $5! Sunday's may be the day of rest for some, but on these two Sunday's, a massive party will be had. Just another reason why Lola's Saloon is your live music destination in Fort Worth. Come spend the day with us!

report of the rock 'n' roll secretary

so the li'l stoogeband has dates at the fairmount on thursday, august 14th (with the fellow americans and one fingered fist); lola's on sunday, august 31st (lola's sunday picnic with the mighty me-thinks and a bunch of other bands); and bar of soap in dallas on saturday, september 13th (with the fellow americans, one fingered fist, and awesome can wait). trying to set up a date for "matturday" (tuesday, september 16th -- hembree's b-day). and, um, practice.

PFFFFT! has shows at the chat room on sundays, july 20th and august 24th, and the fairmount on sunday, july 27th (with bill pohl citizen patrol).

katurday/jim yanaway

today is my sweetie's b-day so we're doing whatever she wants to do.

last night, had dinner with my 30-year friend jim yanaway. jim promoted country shows at fort worth's panther hall back in the early '70s, had a radio show ("finger poppin' time") on kchu, made mind-melting recordings of u.p. wilson and pre-phenom stevie vaughan, ran clubs and a record label (amazing records -- "if it's a hit, it's amazing"), managed the legendary stardust cowboy, and did it all with wry humor and a love of music that's based on knowledge of and respect for the real shit. he's trying to get a country show on satellite radio. if they're smart, they'll pick him up.

ADDENDUM: we wound up walking to sardines and seeing jeremy hull and keith wingate play with johnny case. it gets no better.

Trey Gunn's "Music for Pictures"

I first encountered the Warr guitar in the hands of 99 Names of God’s Mark Cook. The thing looked like an aircraft carrier and allowed the player to play lead, rhythm, and bass lines simultaneously. The technique involved went way past the exhibitionism of Van Halen and all those neck-tapping Italo-Americans from the ‘80s, harking back instead to the orchestral style of ‘60s Canadian virtuoso Lenny Breau and jazz cat Stanley Jordan.

One of the, um, masters of Warr is Trey Gunn, a Texas-born, classically-trained muso currently based in Seattle. From 1994 to 2003, he was a member of King Crimson, playing in the “double trio” lineup alongside Robert Fripp, Bill Bruford, Adrian Belew, Tony Levin, and Pat Mastelotto, as well as smaller units. His project Quodia integrates live music with film and storytelling. He’s been writing and performing scores for TV and films since 1998; his new CD, Music for Pictures, compiles 29 pieces from his multimedia scores, accompanied by drummers including his ex-Crimson bandmate Mastelotto and Seattle stalwart Matt Cameron, and vocalist Beth Quist.

Gunn’s audio dreamscapes are alternately arty and atmospheric, cerebral and surreal, moody and minimalist, pastoral and pointillistic. While the music might not be designed to hold your attention absent an image – through his website, Gunn’s currently inviting filmmakers, animators, and video artists to create images to accompany the tracks -- Music for Pictures can provide a useful subliminal soundtrack for your day-to-day activities even without visual accompaniment. It’s really a collection of miniatures, with most of the tracks running two minutes or less. Still, a few of the pieces stand out: “Nausicaa” hits like modern classical music, while “Cigarette in a Cornfield” increases the heaviosity and “Spirit of Flight” ups the prog quotient. Closing track, “The Ghosts Listen,” is a 21-minute movie-for-your-ears.

Friday, July 18, 2008

fahrenheit 451

a decade ago, my then-teenage middle dtr used to paste up 'zines on the living room floor while i was having band practice. when i asked her why she and her friends didn't do it online, she said, "because we like paper!" these days, with print rags folding at a phenomenal rate, i feel compelled to support 'em before they go away (like, um, record stores and lotsa clubs 'n' restaurants i dug). so yesterday i sent off my coin for subscriptions to arthur and the big takeover. we'll keep buying the star-t, too. not just for the crossword puzzle, either. if you think the american electorate is ign'ant and uninformed now, just wait till the wire services can't afford to bring us news from 'round the world anymore. seriously.

getting around in the new fort worth

some more blather i wrote is online now at

vernixx on internet radio

this from terry vernixx valderas:

Every Saturday night, from 8pm to 11 PM central time on it is ON! HIGH DESERT RHYTHMS.

Hosted by me, Terry Vernixx. Your Saturday night warm up of Techno, House, Tech-house, and Progressive, with a weekly one hour mix each week from a guest DJ.

This week's guest artist is JOSHUA KYND from Dallas spinning a bouncy freaky technotic mix of fun.

Tune in, turn on, and drop out. And be sure and join us in the chat....


Thursday, July 17, 2008

tommy lee jones? no!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

ron asheton 60 yrs old today. and still more rock 'n' roll than you. happy berfday uncle ronnie!

i am envious beyond belief...

...of noo yawkers who, for an entahr week, get to hear cecil taylor and tony oxley play two sets a night at the village vanguard.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

calhoun cd review @

a review i penned of calhoun's new cd falter waiver cultivate is online now at

me-thinks @ reno's chop shop in dallas, 8.8.2008

the mighty me-thinks have a show with the hickoids, ex-nervebreaker t. tex edwards and the swingin' cornflake killers, dragna, and the cicadas on august 8th. it's in dallas at reno's chop shop, which ray liberio first played (with jon doe) in the early '90s, when it was still the exodus.

hold the date

johnny case is celebrating the 25th anniversary of his long-running gig at sardines on september 2nd. he'll release two new cd's on that date.

matt baldwin

this week i'm diggin' paths of ignition, new cd by matt baldwin, a faheyesque gtrist from the bay area, but one who covers toons by neu! and, um, judas priest. cope digs as well.

johnny thunders

...woulda been 56 today if he hadn't, well, y'know -- been johnny thunders.

Monday, July 14, 2008

h.c.-riverside story

just completed layout on haltom city nights: an oral history; 20 years of friendship, bad behavior, and rock 'n' roll with the haltom city-riverside crew, which will be pubbed in a _very_ limited edition (basically just for the ppl in the book) by stash dauber press later this summer and on this here blog sometime after that. i'm hoping i did their story justice. to get some of the flavor, you can listen online to toonage by jon doe, pee pee, hasslehorse, and the pine barons. yeah!

everything dies

...even music we love. reading about the imminent demise of the chicago blues scene, and wynton marsalis bringing "jazz' finest classics" to the bass hall, i'm figuring that in ten years, the original punks will be reaching retirement age and the ones that think "old school punk" means green day will be hitting 40. i'm starting to feel like one of the over-the-hill -- but younger than i am today -- guidos that usedta come in the rekkid store i worked in when i was a teenager, hunting ancient doo-wop sides. intimations of mortality: they're everywhere!

fixed my son-in-law's tele

turns out it wasn't fret damage, i just crimped some strings banging them against the amp at the last stoogeshow. dipshit. must remember next time i get drunk while playing that i'm not a rich rockstar and this shit costs $$$ to fix. hoping that a simple tube replacement will alleviate the hum in the h&k's overdrive channel. arrrggghhh. luckily, i won't need it again until the stoogeshow on 8.14 -- i'm going back to the li'l roland for PFFFFT! gigs.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

fredfest slideshow @

it's been a coupla months, but we just upgraded our quicktime software and my sweetie posted a quicktime movie of fredfest on her photo blog. music's by poet/spoken word artist wes race, with backing by sampler/remixer harry hoggard. dig it!

clint niosi cd review @

a review i penned of clint niosi's new cd the sound of dead horses beaten against cold shoulders is online now at

Friday, July 11, 2008

the creation

and in a similar vein, here's the creation, playing "making time" on german tv in 1966.

the birds

speaking of brit mod r&b, here's a clip of the birds, ron wood's mid-'60s band, from the movie the deadly bees. nice tele.

the 'oo

so apparently roger daltrey and pete townshend are playing a show for vh-1 at pauley pavilion in l.a. wherein the flaming lips, the foo fighters, and pearl jam will play whosongs before they close the show with a 45-minute set. for some reason, this makes me happy.

my dad took my sister 'n' me to see them for my 14th birthday, in august 1971, at forest hills tennis stadium right after who's next came out. he _hated_ that shit, but he did it. i still remember his befuddlement when the joints started coming around. thanks, dad.

shit i dream

i never remember shit i dream, but lately i've remembered a couple. the night after we had drinks at the hideaway, i dreamed i was working in a bizarroworld version of my present job, only i was shoveling crickets (and sorghum -- ???), probably inspahrd by the man who brought me here, who now runs a pet store in arlington. last night i dreamed i was walking by the bookstore in the old tandy center mall, only it was open, and then i was in one of the stories from one of the books, about two redneck kids -- a fat one and a skinny one -- with a gun who shot a dog. what on earth could _that_ portend?

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

comets on fire

teague recommends. so does cope (not once but twice). who'm i to argue?

jimmy webb

best songwriter of the '60s, no shit...i can even forgive him for "macarthur park."

roxy music

the damned


spent yesterday visiting places that are going away: kincaid's hamburgers, where i've been going for 30 yrs, since "the lords of collinwood" lived in the house (now demolished) at the northeast corner of collinwood and sanguinet, and j&j's hideaway, where my sweetie 'n' i went on the night that we met, sitting at the same table where we had drinks with my buds dan (whom i've known for 30 yrs now, imagine that) and larry (who gave me the gentle nudge that propelled me into writing for reasons other than school and money).

speaking of which, i finally got off my ass and wrote some rekkid reviews for next i need to work on photo placement and captions for the haltom city-riverside crew history.

tom'w i'm having a root canal in the morning, so i plan to spend the arvo loaded on painkillers, slurping soup. fun fun fun.

pee pee on myspace

pee pee, the early '90s band that included loel aguirre (vox), mike brown and richard hurley (gtrs), robert scheuerman (bs) and jeff boschert (later replaced by bob cox -- ds), now has a myspace thingy where you can hear tracks from their legendary demo tape and, in the fullness of time, some live stuff as well. an early link in the musical chain that'll be chronicled in the work-in-progress haltom city nights.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

james hinkle review @

a review i penned of james hinkle's new cd some day is online now at

mark cook @ o'riley's in dallas

warr guitar wizard mark cook (99 names of god) has a new project, mirror people, and they're playing at o'riley's in dallas this friday from 12:30-2am.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

boris - "korosu"

from their appropriately named 2002 album heavy rocks...

last night/tonight/tomorrow

last night: brought home a ribeye and a coupla ears of corn for dinner. the trees in our neighborhood musta gotten taller, because it was harder to see the fireworks from stripling than i remember it being four yrs ago. we still walked up to curly's and had our norman rockwell moment with a coupla old rivercrest boys who were there with their wives breaking their diets or something. watched some pixar shorts and finished reading derek bailey's improvisation (thanks, herb).

tonight: watched a documentary about cecil taylor (again, thanks herb).

tomorrow: brunch at fonky fred's, then meeting up with sir marlin von bungy to get my asian media crew jumpsuit and "rice cooker hat" for the fw weekly music awards thingy. then home to cook a piece of coho salmon my sweetie picked up from the market. somewhere in there i need to call work and find out what time i'm working monday -- spaced it out today; duh. i know i'm off tuesday, thursday, and sunday, so need to resched my dental appointment from wednesday to a day when i don't need to work. big fun.

boris - "my neighbor satan"

Friday, July 04, 2008

busy day

yesterday i went to the dentist to get a temporary filling to replace one i broke last week (have to go back to get a root canal next week), recorded with marcus lawyer for the new top secret...shhh album he's working on, got my food handler card at the fw health department, went out to haltom city to get pho, had beers and plotted world domination with matt hickey from the fellow americans at the bull and bush, and came home to watch the pursuit of happyness with my sweetie. working today, then we'll prolly forego a party invite to walk down to stripling middle school and watch fireworks, then walk to curly's for custard. is independence great or what?

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

zanzibar snails communique

hmmm...might have to trek up to denton again later this month, especially since they're playing with yells at eels:

Improbably, Denton/DFW experimentalists Zanzibar Snails have penetrated the European avant-garde market, garnering a generous little blurb from the esteemed Byron Coley in the Size Matters column in the June 2008 issue of The Wire.

Zanzibar Snails Krakkatowiak MAYYRH 3” CD

From Denton, the past home of Texas’s space rock programme, The Zanzibar Snails have emerged as one of the region’s more interesting units over the past couple of years. They appear as a quartet here, using feedback, sax, electronics and percussion to create an extremely neat kind of racket. The feel is akin to The Dead C jamming with Paul Flaherty, and you’d have to agree, that’s a good goddamn feel. - Byron Coley, THE WIRE

Zanzibar has two Denton shows slated for July, the first being a July 19 show at Hailey’s with Austin’s My Education, touring behind their new release Bad Vibrations on powerhouse psyche label Strange Attractors Audio House, joined on the bill by newest Silber Records signees, the nomadic hotel, hotel.

The second Zanzibar show is a July 22 jaunt at Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios opening for legendary art-metallers Harvey Milk, touring behind a new release on Hydrahead and a renewed interest in their outsider brand of unpredictable slo-mo sludge, giving way to gossamer art-balladry, off-kilter tribalism, and/or filthy Sunn 0))-like doom rumblings at the drop of a hat. Also on this bill is Dallas avant-jazz powerhouse Yells at Eels, featuring Dennis, Aaron and Stefan Gonzalez, as well as wiry Denton rockists Kaboom.

Zanzibar Snails in July

July 19@Hailey’s, Denton w/ My Education + hotel, hotel + My Empty Phantom $6 / $8

July 22@Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studios, Denton, w/ Harvey Milk + Yells at Eels + Kaboom!

$6 / $8

Zanzibar’s current releases include not only KRAKKATOWIAK but also the BROWN DWARF full-length CDr on MAYYRH Records.

Coming later this summer is Vanadium Dream, a full-length CDr on L.A. CDr label Phantom Limb Recordings, featuring both some of Zanzibar’s most understated music ever, and some of Nevada Hill’s most ambitious packaging ever.



Zanzibar Snails, noted in issue 16, are back again with a new CD in a hand-made screenprinted digipack. The delirious Brown Dwarf (MAYYRH RECORDS MYH05) features this Texan improvising collective as a four-piece incarnation, including Michael Chamy who works with live electronics and tape loops and also produced the record. Effectively one long piece divided for ease of handling into five named suites, Brown Dwarf delivers a mightily twisted and incredibly dense lump of sonic dough. Given the slightly suffocating atmosphere they brew, it's impressive how some of the key instruments – the sharply-angsted viola of Josh McWhirter for example – manage to float to the surface of this rolling planet of rich electro-acoustic swampery. The Snails' electric guitarist Nevada Hill also appears on the 3-incher D&N (MYH03) with David Lee Price, to forge a collection of eight introspective guitar-scapes that gradually suck you into mesmerising fields of ambiguity. Which isn't a bad
psychological sensation for this time of year, but if you want something guaranteed to make you feel decidedly ill (in a good way, I must stress), then it's the Snails CD for you.


"Experimental" is a frequently misapplied term when it comes to music. But when it comes to Zanzibar Snails—the brainchild of former Dallas Observer freelancer Michael Chamy on shortwave, oscillators and generators and guitarist Nevada Hill—there's hardly a more fitting word. Their performances are improvised, combining elements as earthy and familiar as viola and acoustic guitar with otherworldly sounds like screeching electronics and disembodied voices picked up on a shortwave.

Brown Dwarf is a live recording of a performance at Hailey's in Denton, although you'd never know it, as there's absolutely no crowd noise as Chamy and Hill are aided by Seth Sherman on acoustic guitar and Josh McWhirter on viola and tapes. It's a single composition of tuneless viola, short-wave transmissions, buzzing electronics and a single guitar chord hypnotically strummed for what seems like forever.

It drones on for 34 minutes, divided into five tracks. Ambient soundscapes consisting solely of white noise and the occasional guitar note stretch on for minutes at a time. But just as you get comfortable, the calm is broken by a jarring outburst of distressed electronics or frantic viola abuse. Alternately distressing and soothing, Brown Dwarf is an immersive and perversely enjoyable experience. – Jesse Hughey


Zanzibar Snails -- BROWN DWARF [Mayyrh Records]

Denton, TX sure is a hotbed of psych-lovin' weirdness; Zanzibar Snails are the latest to drink the tainted water and start hallucinating. Recorded live in October, 2007, the five tracks here are all merely divisions in one long performance (approximately 35 minutes) featuring Josh McWhirler on viola and tapes, Michael Chamy on shortwave, loops, and generators, Seth Sherman (ex-Early Lines) on acoustic guitar, and Nevada Hill on electric guitar. Essentially ambient music peppered with a growing plethora of disembodied voices, strange electronic frippery, and other near-random effluvia, the disc starts off with low-key humming and droning and gradually -- so slowly that by the time you realize something new is happening, it dawns on you that it's been happening for a while now -- the ambient fog fills up with repetitive, dreamlike noises like sleepy voices chanting vague nonsense over and over, along with peculiar sounds and steady but minimal guitar strumming that after a
while hardly even sounds like guitar anymore, and the infusion of sounds continues, with the sonic landscape growing steadily more dense and cluttered while somehow remaining light and airy sounding. The increasinly loud guitar clang does move the piece out of ambient territory after a while, along with the avalanche of sounds, but then everything but the guitars and a background hum dies away, and toward the end the sound is dominated mainly by low-level amp hum, plunking acoustic guitar, and incredibly slow guitar strumming. Eventually viola and other noises (shortwave, perhaps?) rise up as well, and the density of sound builds up again, but the sound never grows as quite as powerfully dense or wildly agitated as before, until the disc finally fades out in a whirl of audio chatter. Mesmerizing in a strange and alien way, like listening to hippies in the park after drinking acid-spiked punch. Bonus points for the cool handmade digipack sleeve in the cool earth-tone colors.

b'day weekend recap

finally starting to regain some of my hearing. as mentioned earlier, boris ruled, and now i can listen 'n' better appreciate the japanese vinyl copy of smile that's taken up residence on my turntable. not only are they my fave currently working band, but as i told jon teague, they've actually changed the whole way i think about playing music. seriously.

the li'l stoogeband played till teague couldn't play no more at the chat room. i got to see lotsa friends old 'n' new, and richard hurley, gtrist extraordinaire and proprietor of trophies of distinction, did a fine, fine, supafine job on sir steffin's plaque (a fender "stoogecaster," complete with stoogeaphilia logo on the headstock, inscribed, "sir steffin ratliff, champion guitar strangler, stoogeaphilia, 2006-2008." we're sentimental that way.

steffin, of course, will be welcome to join us for a toon or a set anytime he feels like it, but for now, "marquee moon" sleeps with the fishes. i find it appropriate that we played it for exactly a year: broke it in on my b-day at the wreck room (r.i.p.) last year and played it eight times before retiring it. talk at stoogeprac has centered around maybe "going across the pond" and adding some damned and roxy music to the set, with our new mystery gtrist. altho the next coupla shows will prolly feature only one gtr (um, that'd be me). film, as they say, at 11.

fool that i was, in my inebriated state, i attempted to destroy my equipment at the end of "little doll," so my son-in-law's tele and the hughes & kettner will both require some repairs before we play again on august 14th. and this morning i woke up with a big zit by my nose. so much for aging gracefully.

our egos fueled by decent coverage in the fw weekly, the musos in PFFFFT! -- actually PFFF(FF)T!, for reasons detailed below -- assembled at the li'l chat room the following night, with jeremy hull subbing for matt (who was heading back home to tennessee for the 4th of july holiday). as it happened, jeremy was unable to find a sub for his regular sunday night gig with the galen jeter orchestra, so he didn't show till about 11pm. in the meantime, we played a bassless set with tony on synth and me playing his strat and vox in place of my ailing equipment. (thanks, tony.)

after timely pause, jeremy showed up and the second set commenced, but while we were playing, clay was taken ill; he suspected someone had spiked his drink. there was also an altercation involving a guy who (unbeknownst to me) had been hitting on my wife, who luckily knows how to deal with drunk assclowns in bars. eric harris from yeti showed up again and we took a break to allow him to tune up from B or whatever the band he's playing with now tunes to.

teague was in the house and i asked if he'd play the last set due to clay's incapacity (which woulda made it a kind of yeti reunion, doncha know), but in the event, clay recovered sufficiently to be able to play. we were glad to hear he was ok, and there was some good chemistry between him and jeremy in spite of all the weirdness.

jeremy fit in fine, eric played beautifully, tony is getting more control over the gretsch, and i've decided i need to start bringing the li'l roland to these gigs, rather than the h&k. the lower volume actually worked to our advantage (go fig). and we had the best crowd we've had since the inception of this thing (including a dude from nashville who said he'd read about us in the fw weekly and considered our performance the high point of his trip to dfw). for which we prolly owe the paper thanks.

our "long-distance guru" karl poetschke is going to be in town next weekend and had been urging me to book a gig, but as it happens, i'm working late saturday and have the day off sunday, which means i can actually attend the fw weekly awards soiree, which i intend to do in the jumpsuit of the asian media crew, just so that i can deliver matt hembree's acceptance speech _when_ he is selected "most valuable player."

meanwhile, i have a spiffy new pussyhouse propaganda t-shirt courtesy of ray, some movies to watch courtesy of my middle dtr, a gift card from half price books courtesy of #1 stoogeaphilia fan amy, and a copy of derek bailey's improvisation to read courtesy of other arts impresario herb levy. so there.

in the fullness of time, my sweetie will post some more of her pics from the weekend on her photo blog (as will i on myspace whenever _that_ shit will cooperate).

ADDENDUM: forgot to mention the art show metrognome collective mounted at the chat that gave folks something interesting to look at while we played. you can see some of the pieces in the pics on the stoogeband and PFFFFT! myspace thingies.